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Chinese TV “Passed Off Top Gun Footage as Chengdu J-10”


A Chinese state news broadcaster has apparently been caught passing off dogfight footage from the Hollywood movie “Top Gun” as footage of China’s latest fighter jet destroying a target drone in a live fire exercise.

The aircraft in question, the Chengdu J-10 (or “Jian Shi” – “Annihilator 10”), is China’s latest multi-role fighter jet, introduced in 2005 and officially claimed to be “completely Chinese designed” but in fact based on a mixture of Israeli and Russian design and technology. A number of the aircraft have been lost due to malfunctions.

China Central Television broadcast footage of the J-10 supposedly blowing up a target aircraft on a news programme, but Chinese net users soon noticed the 2 second clip they presented as the latest glory of the PLAAF bore a striking resemblance to the classic Tom Cruise movie “Top Gun,” showing an F-5 (standing in for a fictional MiG) being blown to bits by an F-14.

The comparison images they prepared demonstrate the similarity – the CCTV footage is on the left, Top Gun on the right:


It is not clear whether CCTV actually have permission to use clips from Top Gun in the first place, adding copyright infringement to the mix.

Another distinct possibility is that the military itself provided the footage to CCTV thinking neither they nor the Chinese people would know any better.

Whatever the case, China passing off pirated Hollywood footage of US aircraft as the triumph of its own “indigenously designed” jet is probably the ultimate (so far) in “made in China” irony.

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